PyTennessee was last weekend and it was amazing! I was privileged to meet so many incredibly bright, kind people, hear great talks, and was honored to give a talk of my own. Below I share highlights from the weekend and a round-up of all the conference resources I’ve collected thus far: links to talks, slides, video, etc. Hope you enjoy and find this useful!

First things first:


The venue was gorgeous. The food was delicious. The hotel was cozy, clean, and convenient. Conference check-in was easy and quick. The “red shirts” volunteers were helpful and kind and always there when you needed ’em. Organizer Jason, his delightful wife Denise, and his lead volunteer coordinator William put together an incredible event. Thank you.


Friday night EventBrite treated the PyLadies to dinner and conversation at their Nashville HQ. Lynn Root gave an inspiring, heartfelt version of this talk entitled “I’m faking it.” If you didn’t get to hear her speak, I highly recommend reading the post.

Probably the funniest slide from PyTennesee weekend. From Ian‘s “Cutting Off the Internet: Testing Applications that Use Requests” Saturday afternoon.

Also hilarious (and fascinating, informative, and generally fun): Kyle Kelley’s keynote on Docker for Ephemeral Workloads. His slides are here.


Chris and Ashwini gave a thoroughly engaging, beginner-friendly talk: Introduction to HTTPS: A Comedy of Errors. Love how expressive Chris is! Here are the slides.

Folks really loved Chris‘ talk “Purely Functional programming in Python“, but I was at Becky‘s so I missed it. Thankfully he shared slides. Hopefully someone will eventually see fit to record him giving this one – looks like a lot of fun!

Bill Israel
gave a thoughtful, accessible talk entitled “Function Decorators: How Do You Even“. His slides are here.

It was a privilege to hear Becky talk about her passion for languages as she persuaded us all “Why Your Next API Should Be Designed By a Linguist“. I love it when people bring their whole selves to Python. Her talk was recorded, but has not been posted… yet!

Photo (and creation!) by Kevin Cox, @VintageBinary

Photo (and creation!) by Kevin Cox, @VintageBinary

Legos all weekend with Lamp Post Group! Lamp Post was PyTennessee’s champion sponsor, not only providing funds to make the conference happen, but making an additional donation of $500 to PyLadies! I’m certain I’m not the only person who got goosebumps when Lucky made the announcement before Lynn’s keynote Sunday evening. It was a total treat to spend time building and chatting with Lamp Post Group’s Lucky and Ben.


Dear Ian, thank you for your long arms, Sincerely, me & my love of selfies. With Ian and the loveliest lovely Anna.


Anna’s talk Django Girls: A Success Story! She has inspired me to host a Django Girls workshop in Atlanta! She shared her slides here. And you’re already following her on Twitter, right?

I’m sure you’ve already heard about my adoration for Anna, but I’ll share again, here: she was a huge inspiration for my talk and has been instrumental in my Python learning journey. She is inspiring, kind, and an amazing mentor. I’m so glad she’s in my life!

Photo by Aubrey Howell (@simplyaubs)

Photo by Aubrey Howell (@simplyaubs)

Ed Finkler’s talk “Stronger Than Fear: Mental Health in the Developer Community“. I’m so thrilled to share that you can watch it here! The slides are here. Ed’s talk is particularly meaningful to me because, as I shared during my talk, I also struggle with depression and anxiety. I am glad PyTennessee was the kind of conference where we could bring our very real struggles into the room in a tender, compassionate, and constructive way.

Meeting James Dozier and learning that my talk was an inspiration for his new blogging project, Think Code Make! He was also inspired by Aubrey Howell’s (hilarious/amazing) talk “Shitty Code Leads to Pretty Code: Reconciling Development with Reality“. I was SO BUMMED to miss it, but thankfully they were able to record. I’ll post the link here when it is ready! It’ll be one to watch, y’all, for sure.

Meeting Elizabeth Wickes and learning about her Guided Self-Study Lesson Plan for Python. She has put a LOT of thought and effort into teaching Python to folks from non-technical backgrounds and would make a great future speaker (hint hint, conference organizers!).


Lynn‘s keynote Sunday evening. It was great to hear more about her journey and how Spotify uses Python and open-source tools. Plus, she keeps us smilin’.

PyTennessee resource round-up

Since I wasn’t able to attend every talk, I made a list of resources gathered from Twitter for future reference. Let me know if there are others, and I’ll add them!

Resources for fellow Atlantan Daniel Rocco‘s talk “Clean and Green: Pragmatic Architecture Patterns” are here! Includes links to the screecast, slides, and clean architecture resources. I’m glad I got to hear his talk at PyATL, cuz he was up against me at PyTN!

How to really get git” by Susan Tan: slides here!

A. Jesse Jiryu Davis gave an inspiring talk called “Dodge Disasters and March to Triumph as a Mentor“. I’m so glad he shared a written version of his talk here!

Analyzing Data with Python” / “Twitter Network Analysis with NetworkX” by Sarah Guido!

Slides and a post for Michael Herman‘s talk “Docker In Action: fitter, happier and more productive“. Oh, and while we’re at it, some helpful resources and tutorials from the RealPython.com team.

Matt O’Donnell‘s slides for “Behavior Driven Development with PyQT“.

A little bit of video of the intensely charming K Lars Lohn during his talk “The Well Tempered API”: Baroque Cooperative Multitasking

Here’s a great blog post from Jamie Phillips about his PyTennessee weekend.

I also made a Twitter list of some of the folks I heard/saw/met at PyTennessee. I’m sure it’s incomplete, though – please let me know if there are others who should be added!

Finally, I had a great time sharing my own story – and cookies! – Sunday afternoon.

Thanks to everybody who came out to listen, eat cookies, ask questions, and just generally be supportive. I enjoyed connecting with all of you!

For those who are curious, my next post to Coding with Knives will be a written version of my talk. Stay tuned!